The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) banned Burrows for “not being a fit and proper” person
Jonathan Burrows who was a Managing Director at Blackrock Asset Management Investor Services Limited admitted he sullied the reputation of the City by his actions.
Today Burrows paid the ultimate price for his fare-dodging following the decision by The FCA to ban him for life from the financial industry. This case goes back to the 19th November 2013, when Burrows was stopped by a Revenue Protection Officer at the exit gates of London Cannon Street Station and was found to have failed to purchase a valid ticket for the entire journey whilst travelling on the Southeastern train service from Stonegate railway station, East Sussex.
Burrows was interviewed under caution and admitted to evading his rail fares on a number of occasions. On the occasions on which Burrows failed to purchase a valid ticket he boarded the London bound train at Stonegate, a rural station with no barriers, without purchasing a ticket. Once he had arrived in London he exited through the barriers at Cannon Street Station by “tapping out” using an Oyster travel card, paying the maximum fare of £7.20 rather than purchasing the required ticket for £21.50.
After being caught red-handed there was a heated debate on social media at the time as to how an unnamed City worker had managed avoid prosecution for repeated fare-dodging by Southeastern Railway by paying £43,000 in backdated fares.
Tracey McDermott the FCA’s director of enforcement and financial crime, said: “Burrows held a senior position within the financial services industry. His conduct fell short of the standards we expect. Approved persons must act with honesty and integrity at all times and, where they do not, we will take action.”
Burrows admitted to the FCA that he had evaded his train fare on a number of occasions and had done so in the knowledge that he had been breaking the law. The FCA does not consider that this is fit and proper behaviour for an approved person.
Burrows also admitted in interview that he did not disclose his behaviour to his employer. Although the FCA is not penalising Burrows for not informing his employer the FCA has taken this into account, amongst other things, in deciding what action to take.
Reacting to the FCA’s decision, Mr Burrows said: “I have always recognised that what I did was foolish. I have apologised to all concerned and reiterate that apology publicly.
“The size of the settlement [with Southeastern] could be said to have led to a distorted perception of the scale of my wrongdoing. While I respect the FCA’s decision today, I also regret it, coming as it did after a 20-year career in the City that was without blemish.
“I recognise that the FCA has on its plate more profound wrongdoing than mine in the financial services sector, and I am sorry that my case has taken up its time at this critical juncture for the future of the City and its reputation.”